This week, we are introducing you to Ekaterina Kukhareva, a Ukrainian born designer based in London. Ekaterina graduated from Central Saint Martin’s College of Art and Design specialising in knitwear. Macramé, crochet and knitting feature heavily in her collections. Her design aesthetic is also influenced by her Russian heritage and in particular Queens of past ages. Ekaterina creates timeless pieces for a strong and adventurous woman.
- Can you give us a bit of background on your brand, when you started it and why?
In 2009, graduating from Central Saint Martin’s I undertook various internships, one of which was in the pattern cutting department of Temperley London. My passion, however, lay in the creation of fabrics and using my creation to make interesting outfits. In the summer of 2010 I made the decision to create my first collection. I chose to work solely with knitwear, using simple shapes and concentrating on blocks of different textures and fabrics with a mixture of handmade and machine made elements. My first collection was a SS-2011 collection called ‘Undercover Queen’.
- What inspires your work?
I am inspired by history and documentaries. I enjoy things which are unknown and mysterious. For example, most of my collections are based on an icon or with a heroine in mind. I also love watching people on the streets. I find it fascinating for instance that a grandma on a street in Ukraine might inspire me in the creation of my latest trend. It is at these moments I wish I would carry a camera with me at all times.
- Who inspires you?
My son inspires me. Vladimir is 5 years old, I give him my sketches to draw on and he also tells me his likes and dislikes. I love listening to what he has to say and how seriously he takes my work.
- Is music important in your working day, what is on repeat at the moment?
Unless I am concentrating on numbers, music is very important to me when I am designing. It helps me focus completely on the design and isolate myself from the rest of the world when I need it most. At the moment I am listening to 60’s French music, so you can guess what my next collection would be inspired by!
- Where is your favorite city/place?
My favorite city at the moment is Los Angeles. I’ve fallen in love with the city! I have not been to many places, but I would certainly go back again. I enjoy America’s laid back lifestyle and the beach life in Malibu…now I know what all the fuss is about!